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Champions Wall unveiled for 90th anniversary season

A Champions Wall now sits alongside the playing field at Bishop Park, noting all 15 Norths Devils men’s first grade premierships and the names of every player and coach from those grand final wins.

The wall was unveiled last Saturday as part of the Devils’ 90th anniversary celebrations before the club opened its Hostplus Cup title defence and played its inaugural BMD Premiership match.

Players from teams as far back as 1959 attended the formal ceremony. Greg Fowler, Ian Massie, Allan McLean, Howard Whittaker, Ray Cattanach and Barry Spring were among the players from the 1950s and 1960s in attendance.

Mark Murray unveiled the pennant from 1980, when he was Devils captain, and also the 1998 pennant when he coached Norths to victory.

Current captain Jack Ahearn was on hand for the 2021 and 2022 pennants.

“It’s an honour to be involved with a project that looks back at Norths history like this,” Ahearn said.

“And it’s an honour to stand alongside some of the greats of this club who turned out for the unveiling. We’re privileged to follow in the footsteps of those players and we’re always mindful of the history of this club.”

The ceremony was also attended by Federal Sports Minister and Federal Member for Lilley Anika Wells, Queensland Senator Anthony Chisholm, Minister for Children and Youth Justice Member for Nudgee Leanne Linard and Brisbane City Councillor for Northgate Ward Adam Allan.

The ceremony began with the unveiling of the 1934 pennant by Devils life member Peter Fraser.

Norths won the 1934 grand final after breaking a deadlock with four minutes remaining. The Devils’ Queensland halfback Jack Stapleton sparked the winning try from halfway, which went through six sets of hands for Norths to defeat Wests 7-4.

The ceremony finished with the 2022 team which one seven consecutive matches to successfully defend their title after falling to the edge of the top eight mid-season.

The Devils have plans to include the same recognition of women’s premiership teams.

Photo by Alan Drinnen

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